Jan. 20, 1994
Vol. 13, No. 10

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    Library expands electronic holdings; more to come

    The University Library is increasing access to electronic information resources by loading 10 years of catalog records from the East Asian Languages & Civilizations Department into the current on-line catalog and adding two new electronic data bases to the campus network. The new data bases, the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) and MEDLINE, are scheduled to begin operation this quarter.

    Currently available are more than 31,000 Romanized East Asian records (approximately 20,000 Chinese, 9,000 Japanese and 2,000 Korean records) that have been loaded into the University Library's on-line catalog. These records, formerly all in card catalogs, represent cataloging by the East Asian Languages & Civilizations Department since 1984 and are now available from terminals in campus libraries and by remote access.

    "Centralizing these materials in the on-line system provides greater visibility for the collection and greatly helps scholars both in the East Asian field and in other areas," said Judith Nadler, Assistant Director for Technical Services for the Library. There are now about 1.5 million catalog records in the on-line system; the conversion of older cards will continue as funding becomes available.

    In addition to expanding the on-line catalog, the Library is collaborating with Academic Information Technologies and the Biological Sciences Division to add two new electronic data bases to the campus network.

    The first project involves working with Academic Information Technologies to acquire and electronically install the Oxford English Dictionary. The OED has 300,000 English-language entries and contains literary citations dating back as far as 1150. The on-line OED will feature a graphic interface for Macintosh computer users. A general character-based interface will be available for non-Macintosh users.

    The Library and the Biological Sciences Division are collaborating on the second project, which is the purchase of a new system -- CDPlus -- to access MEDLINE, a data base released by the National Library of Medicine. The CDPlus system is used for MEDLINE access by almost all major libraries associated with medical schools in the United States. Terminals for MEDLINE use will be located in the Joseph Regenstein Library and the John Crerar Library, and a terminal will be located in the School of Social Service Administration.

    Both MEDLINE and the OED will be available campus-wide on the University network.

    Priscilla Caplan, Assistant Director for Library Systems, said the changes are part of a general move to offer students, faculty and staff easier access to more data. "Having information resources like the OED and MEDLINE at your fingertips is part of a broader vision to provide the University with a comprehensive range of information services on a sophisticated campus network," Caplan said. "Imagine having access to these systems wherever you have a terminal and modem -- at home, at the office or in the library."

    Students, faculty and staff who need computer-access accounts should go to Academic Information Technologies at 1155 E. 60th St.; a University ID is needed to activate an account. For general computer consulting and trouble-shooting, the AIT computer-services hotline number is 702-3111.